It has been waaaaaaay too long since I've posted a Sunday Runday. I'm sorry. I missed you too. There are a couple of things I have backlogged, but between you and I? Summer running had me really bummed out. Too hot. Too sticky. I kind of stopped enjoying it there for a bit.
But luckily cooler weather is upon us, just in time for my fall race season. October always starts me racing all through the new year.
Beginning with the Grape Day 5k. The last few years I've found myself running it with Thatkid - or more correctly, run/walk/whining with Thatkid. So this year when he told me he didn't want to run it, I wasn't too bummed out. I haven't run a race for time since March, and I haven't run a race since April! After a really ugly summer, it would feel good to stretch my legs a bit.
Then earlier this week, Thatkid decided he really did want to run the race. With a $10 coupon coming through my email, I signed him up and resigned myself to the fact that maybe it was better to take it a little slower with my race return.
Saturday morning was gloomy. Overcast and sprinkling. Perfect running weather if the sprinkling didn't turn into anything more ominous. Thatboy dropped us off at the start and went to find parking. Thatkid and I walked around a bit to keep warm, but the nice thing about running a race close to home is that we didn't have to get there very early. In no time at all Thatboy and Thatbaby were walking up the road toward us and we were heading to the start line.
As usual, Thatkid took off like a bullet. I reminded him to keep his speed in check so he would make it all three miles, and all three hills. He backed off a bit, only to put on the burners when we passed the groups of cheerleaders cheering us on. ("I had to run fast, or they would have kept cheering for me to run fast!")
We hit the first mile marker right after the first water station and Thatkid was excited to see that he had run his fastest mile to date. So excited he charged right up the first hill.
It wasn't too long after that he asked if we were almost done with mile 2. We weren't. We weren't even at 1.5 miles yet. And we were about to hit the second hill.
But at the top of that hill, we were halfway done, and heading downhill for a brief respite. One more hill, and we were turning around and running downhill to mile marker 2. The weather ended up being perfect for the race, and I love running by all the old houses and the tree lined streets. Thatkid and I pointed out houses that would be really cool to live in and decorate for Halloween.
Then we were heading back out toward the main street, and those cheerleaders. Thatkid decided he wanted to conserve some energy, so he could really sprint to the finish. We walked a bit between cheerleaders.
"When we get to that 3 mile sign, I'm going to run as hard as I can." He told me. And true to his word, he took off. The road was empty in front of him, and I hung back as the crowd went crazy cheering for the little dude. One of the policemen, on a bike, rode over and gave him an escort to the finish. He was talking to him, but when I asked after the race when the policeman said, he couldn't remembered. He was too focused on the finish.
And finish he did. It was adorable to watch and I knew he was beaming with pride. Especially because we had talked about the fact that he was about to break his own personal record.
Usually after the race, we grab breakfast as a family at the local coffee shop. But this year, the burger joint down the street, who had just started serving breakfast earlier this year, offered a discount for racers and was one of the two locations to pick up your free post-race beer. Which made it a no-brainer for a new family tradition. I already love the place for their breakfast burritos and the kids are a fan of any place that has chocolate chip pancakes.
But I was tickled pink to see that the free post-race beer they were offering was brewed especially for today. A local brewery - Burgeon - had created a Grape Day 5k beer!
A personal record for Thatkid and a fun new beer for me made for a very enjoyable race morning!